undergrouond spring

bungalow975August 8, 2012

My daughter and her husband are building a new home. While digging the foundation, the excavator hit an underground spring (artesian aquifer), which flooded the hole. They immediately consulted an engineer, who assured them that with proper preparation (thicker concrete, waterproof membranes, extra sump pump(s), etc.), their new basement will not become an indoor swimming pool. Has anyone had experience with this? And is there any way they can harness and utilize the spring water? I should add that the area in which the spring was found is a future indoor sports court under the garage and is 3 feet deeper than the rest of the basement.

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I had the same issue, however foundation was fine - it was digging extra 3 ft to put sewage pit, hit artesian. And it really depends on flow, ours was quite a bit...

What a mess. Yes install pit with powered pump, snake run lots of corrugated pipes under, attach them with clips (thick wire), turn on pump, put gravel, membrane, add thick concrete with hardner. Engineer is correct, they can put commercial buildings in water, however understand it will not be his basement when it floods 10,15 years later.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 6:01AM
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Move the garage. Or buy a new lot.

If there enough volume that the spring now flows out onto the land to create a small stream, you've got all kinds of headaches here, and not just water infiltration management ones. You will have to manage the flow off of the property where it doesn't impact any neighbors negatively. And, you might be subject to some wetlands regulations here if the flow is active at least 6 months out of the year.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 11:09AM
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My first inclination is GreenDesigns'. But, then, you've had an on-site visit by a qualified geo engineer, I presume.

AS mentioned above, the answer depends on the flow.

I hit water at one corner of an infill excavation where a walkup was put in, probably flowing one gallon per minute. Rather than installing a sump pump and pit, I used extra weepers and a stone storage reservoir for "heavy flow" days. Lived there for six years with an absolutely dry basement while the stream flowed away to the city storm sewer.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 12:48PM
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Same issue here. Our builder and foundation guy did a fabulous job of rerouting the spring and making sure our basement is dry with extensive drainage work. And a year later, the spring has dried up completely, and we have never had an issue with water in our basement. The water was rerouted to a pond on property next to ours that our builder owns. It actually enhanced the pond and has no negative impact to anyone. I'm not sure if the link below will work for you anymore, DH may have terminated that site. The pictures aren't in any order, just random pictures we took. Click on drainage and waterproofing.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pics of our drainage

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 2:04PM
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I dealt with the same issue two years ago. The homeowners bought the land in a dry spell but when we excavated in a wet period, up from the ground came a bubbling crude...
The slab on grade home is now completely dry with no water problems whatsoever and there is no sump pump involved.

We may have had more slope to assist us and I would recommend using PVC pipes drained to daylight if possible.

We ran perforated PVC around the interior perimeter covered with clean gravel and wrapped the whole thing in a silt fabric to form a "burrito". It drains to daylight in two spots and on the high end installed a solid PVC pipe which exits the stem wall at gravel level below the slab and runs up the wall 6 feet or so below the soffit and acts as a passive radon stack which doesnt penetrate the building envelope. No water no radon.

We also did a french drain with clean gravel protected by silt fabric drained to daylight.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 9:17PM
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Thank you all for the great information (and photos)!

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 11:03PM
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Get it to drain to daylight with no pumping.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 11:10AM
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